May 2008

The Information Age Means Big Business for Salons and Spas

By Lake Furney

The Information Age, defined largely by the internet: that mind boggling intra-global connection and vast repository of the collective knowledge of the entire planet, is upon us.

First, the Stone Age allowed mankind to begin using transportation (the wheel), and hunt more effectively, ensuring his survival. We continued to advance through the Bronze Age, the Iron Age, etc.

Now, enter the Information Age.

As with every age before it, the personal success of those living in this Information Age depends largely on their ability to adapt to, or more importantly, use the current tools of the day.

What does all this have to do with you, the salon/spa owner? More than at any other time in history this Information Age, powered by the internet, provides a veritable treasure trove of unlimited sources of knowledge and education. Today, anyone with access to a computer can use these resources to turn a struggling salon into a cash machine.

Education is a powerful tool for success in the world. While there are some salon owners who have gone to college and earned a business degree, the reality is that the vast majority of salon/spa owners are just people who turned a love for health/beauty into a hopeful effort at doing it for a living.

Even among college graduates, the real world often requires skills that weren’t taught in the classroom, and street smarts soon go to the head of the line for what makes a salon work. Knowledge of business growth and development strategies, as well as marketing and business operation become the prerequisites for just keeping a salon afloat, let alone making it profitable.

That is precisely why the internet can be such a powerful tool. A few simple Google searches can bring you countless volumes of information about marketing, business growth, and running a business.

Granted, walking out into the middle of the information super highway can be a little intimidating. Knowing which pieces of information to use and how to apply them to the business of salons and spas can be a daunting task to say the least.

Thankfully, there is a growing trend of business-in-a-box approaches that put this information together for you. A new approach to education and business growth is in the combination of e-learning (or online learning), and done-for-you marketing toolkits that provide complete templates of properly written sales letters and other marketing products that you can use just by plugging in your own salon/spa name. One example of this new combination of online learning and done-for-you marketing is Salon Success University.

The owner, Chuck Choate, has put marketing expertise and experience as a salon owner together in a university- style approach that allows salon owners to learn at their own pace. Choate comes from a family of salon owners who have been in the industry for over 30 years, and currently owns three successful salons in the Milwaukee area.

“I’ve not only been through my own struggles and frustrations, but I also watched family members go through the same things,” Choate explained as to why he started the online university. “I really have a desire to save other salon owners the hassles I went through. I believe that using our programs can genuinely help them be successful.”

Can someone really offer you “Success in a box”? Of course not. There is no substitute for hard work and dedication, but do you think there is someone to make it a whole lot easier? You bet, and companies like Salon Success University and others will be helping salon owners accomplish the things they set out to do in the first place, like feeling the satisfaction of owning and operating a successful salon, and all the benefits that go with it.

Lake Furney is a freelance writer based in Austin, Texas ( For more information on Salon Success University, go to